A 50-year-old North Riverside, Illinois, man who was staying in a hotel in Madison for an annual Epic users get-together was charged on May 16 with three counts of possessing underage pornography. The charges stemmed from an incident in which pornographic images were allegedly discovered on the man's phone after he reportedly forgot to take his phone with him when he left the hotel room.
According to court documents, a maid who was cleaning rooms at Extended Stay America discovered the phone after the man had checked out. Since the room was actually booked by Epic for another companies meeting, staff at the hotel were initially unable to figure out who the phone belonged to. Employees at the hotel later contacted police after they attempted to find out who the owner of the phone was by searching the contents of the phone for the owner's contact information, but found what were considered questionable photos instead.
During a subsequent analysis of the phone, police state they allegedly discovered sexually provocative images of young girls who were around 7 to 12 years of age, wearing swimsuits and underwear. After further analysis of the phone, police additionally found photos of girls who were between 3 to 5 year old, who were reportedly photographed with no clothes on.
A subsequent interview with the man allegedly revealed that the man admitted that he had downloaded the images from the Internet. If convicted of the charges, the man faces a mandatory minimum of three years of jail time.
Sex crimes such as possession of underage pornography can cause damage to reputations for defendants' who are found guilty of such crimes. An experienced Wisconsin criminal attorney may be able to assist a defendant by building a defense against these types of charges.
Source: Wisconsin State journal, "Phone left in hotel room brings child porn charges" Ed Treleven, May. 16, 2014